17. The Procurement Ombudsman shall determine whether to review a complaint referred to in subsection 16(1) within 10 working days after the filing of the complaint, and shall, without delay, notify the complainant and the contracting department of his or her decision, and provide that department with a copy of the complaint.
18. (1) The Procurement Ombudsman shall review a complaint referred to in subsection 16(1), if the requirements set out in subsection 22.2(1) of the Act and in sections 15 and 16 have been met and the interpretation and application of the terms and conditions or the scope of the work of the contract are not in dispute between the parties.
(2) If the Procurement Ombudsman reviews the complaint under subsection (1), he or she may request that the complainant or the contracting department provide any document or information necessary for the review.
19. The Procurement Ombudsman shall end the review and notify the complainant and the contracting department of that fact and the reasons for it, if
(a) the complainant withdraws the complaint;
(b) one or more of the requirements set out in subsection 22.2(1) of the Act, section 15 or 16 have not been met; or
(c) the Procurement Ombudsman determines that the complaint is frivolous or vexatious.
Findings and Recommendations
20. For the purpose of the review, the Procurement Ombudsman shall take into consideration any relevant factors, including the following:
(a) whether the administration of the relevant contract was conducted in a reasonable manner in the circumstances; and
(b) whether any of the parties acted in bad faith.
21. The Procurement Ombudsman may not make recommendations
(a) altering the terms and conditions of a contract; or
(b) providing a remedy other than as specified in the contract.
22. The Procurement Ombudsman shall provide, in accordance with subsection 22.2(3) of the Act, his or her findings and any recommendations within 120 working days after the day on which the complaint is filed.
Alternative Dispute Resolution Process
23. (1) If a party to a contract requests an alternative dispute resolution process under paragraph 22.1(3)(d) of the Act with respect to a dispute on the interpretation or application of a contract’s terms and conditions, the Procurement Ombudsman shall ask the other parties if they agree to participate in such a process and to bear the costs of that process, within 10 working days after the request, and permit those parties 10 working days to respond to his or her request.
(2) The Procurement Ombudsman shall receive a request that is in writing and includes
(a) the names of the parties to the contract;
(b) a copy of the contract; and
(c) a brief summary of the facts in issue.
(3) Within 10 working days after receiving the last of the other parties’ responses,
(a) if all parties agree, the Procurement Ombudsman shall submit to the parties a proposal for an alternative dispute resolution process; and
(b) if the parties do not agree, the Procurement Ombudsman shall notify the party who made the request that the request cannot be granted.
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